Kennesaw State University Museum of History and Holocaust Education hosted a tribute to 1940s USO swing dances with "Jump, Jive an' Wail" on November 15th, 2008. Nearly 250 members of the KSU and local metro Atlanta community came together Saturday night for an evening of swing dancing and listening to the Big Band tunes of The Peachtree Jazz Edition 18-piece ensemble.
The event focused on providing an enjoyable and enlightening experience that commemorated the World War II era. The live swing music, hands-on World War II activities, and USO-themed decorations reflected the style and presence of the 1940s. "Jump, Jive an' Wail" also recognized Veterans Day, which was observed on the Tuesday before the swing dance. From British WWII veterans who reminisced about dancing during the 1940s to current members of local ROTC branches, many involved in the military came to participate in the remembrance.
The event was hosted in partnership with KSU's Public History Program. Several student volunteers from the program aided in the educational activities and collected canned food donations for Feed the Future, a program initiated by KSU's Health Clinic and Staff Senate to provide basic food necessities for struggling university students. The swing dance also brought attention to one of the Museum of History and Holocaust Education’s current exhibitions, "V for Victory: Georgia Remembers World War II," on loan from the Atlanta History Center and open to the public at the KSU Center.
Dr. Catherine Lewis, director of the Museum of History and Holocaust Education and Associate Professor of History at KSU, affirmed the event's success and noted that the swing dance "attracted nearly 250 people, many of whom had not been to KSU before. It was a great way to introduce them to the university and our public outreach activities."
The KSU Museum of History and Holocaust Education, under the direction of Dr. Catherine Lewis, provides a series of entertaining and educational programs to promote diversity, build character, and encourage respect in the metropolitan Atlanta community. Programs are funded in part by the Marcus Foundation. For more information, please visit http://historymuseum.kennesaw.edu/.
Posted: November 20, 2008